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Saudi Arabia’s First Female Director has Unveiled the Trailer for Her New Film

Trailblazing Saudi Arabian filmmaker Haifaa Al-Mansour has finally revealed the official trailer of her upcoming movie The Perfect Candidate – which recently premiered at the 76th Venice Film Festival.

Al-Mansour is known for shattering stereotypes with her debut film Wadjda – which was the Kingdom’s first film submission to the Academy Awards – in 2012. The Saudi filmmaker has continuously supported as well as inspired other female directors of the next generation. 

“There is something different about me returning to my country, it is a different experience than any other, and I saw the change after I came back. I found so many actresses who came forward for the casting of the lead role, which really surprised me,” the director previously shared with

The director compared her experience while filming Wadjda, to what the situation is like now. She said, “I was working and giving instructions from the back of the car then because I did not want to draw attention or make a fuss. But the community has become more receptive to the industry now that cinemas have opened in the Kingdom.”

While everyone can agree that the Kingdom is transforming their art and cultural scene, this is a big moment for the country. The Perfect Candidate was the first movie endorsed by Saudi Arabia’s new national film organization, the Saudi Film Council. The drama film follows the journey of a young female doctor Maryam, played by Saudi actress Mila Alzahran, who runs for public office and tackles gender-based labels.

Over the weekend, the Saudi director along with lead actresses Mila Alzahrani and Dhay walked the red carpet of the 11-day festival that introduced Al Mansour’s film – the only Arab movie nominated at the event. 

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